PATERSON, NJ (PIX11) — A serious motor vehicle accident in Paterson killed one man and sent six other people to the hospital on Tuesday, officials said. All of them were innocent bystanders.
Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes and Paterson Police Chief Ibrahim Baycora said the accident happened about 3:15 p.m. near Main and Market streets. The crash involved multiple vehicles and pedestrians.
According to the preliminary investigation, the operator of a Honda CRV struck an occupied police vehicle that was pulled over on the side of the road before colliding with another vehicle in the intersection. The driver then hit several bystanders.
Mayor Andre Sayegh said the suspect’s vehicle was stolen. He added investigators are still working to determine whether or not the suspect was involved in a police chase beforehand.
“What I know is, there was a foot pursuit,” he told PIX11 News. “As far as a vehicle pursuit is concerned, they’re still fleshing out that information.”
In the wake of a dramatic increase in car thefts across New Jersey, state officials recently gave police more discretion to be able to chase suspects in their vehicles. In some cases, those chases have led to fatal crashes.